Monday, September 27, 2010

Can’t Do It

Inevitably it happens. I’m driving my car, walking the dog, or drifting off to sleep in my bed when the words come, fluid and elegant, perfect. And I’m nowhere near my computer. I can only hope that if I repeat them enough in my head, I’ll be able to get to my computer on time and get the words down. Of course, this never happens. Sure I’ll get the gist of it, but it is never as perfect as when I first thought of them.

The obvious solution –as pointed out to me by my husband and friends- is to get a Dictaphone. Hell, I have a recorder on my phone! It even has this cute little fifties style microphone icon that pops up on the screen. But I just can’t do it. I hate my voice. HATE IT. Every time I try, my tongue swells in my mouth, my lips feel too small. I end up with an unintelligible muffle of words. Bah!

I should get over it. I should! But I just can’t do it.


  1. OMG, do I know this! Only it's mostly in situations where I cannot even get to/use a Dictaphone/my phone or pen and paper. Especially at night, I'm usually too far under to be able to consciously rouse myself enough to get to it.
    I'm still hoping that one day they invent a thought extractor or something...

  2. LOL, I should have added that I am without paper and pen too! SO annoying. And YES! I dream of a thought extractor! Wouldn't that be cool?? :)

  3. I'm so with you! I know I have a strong Southern accent, but when I hear it on a voice recorder, I shudder. At least I keep paper and pen by the bed for the middle of the night ideas. I can read it even if I write in the dark. If I turn on the lamp, the dogs would want to go outside. LOL! I'm not doing THAT at 3 AM!

  4. Since you dislike your speaking voice (our voice sounds different from inside our heads, than from outside it)

    Use a higher or lower 'fake' voice. or sing the words... use an 'announcer' type voice...

    but get used to the voice so when you are recording the story thought, you aren't distracted by the voice.

    It could end up being fun.... and/or the voice of a character

  5. I couldn't either. Not because I don't like the sound of my voice. Because there's a maze of detour signs between my brain and my mouth, and the gist of whatever I think is about all that ever makes it through. Brain to fingertips is an open road.

  6. I'm with Lori on this one. If I had to speak my thoughts, they'd be censored by some inner editor or inner actor with stage-fright.

    >tapping the mic< "Is thing on?... It is?...Oh good...Well then, let's see... what wazzit I wanted to say?"

  7. Ick! I'm with you Kristen! I could never never use such a thing - imagine playing it back and having to type all that stuff up, with the pauses and the word changes and the hesitancy - never mind the sound of my own voice! Ew!
    Paper and pen - even if I remembered to keep some - only go so far; it's hard to write by moonlight (when, you know, no one else wants to be up at that hour) and darn it, I don't want to get out of bed and stay up all night!
    And so I continue to lose beautiful phrases, floating away into the ether every night...

  8. Writing down ideas at night... Has anyone ever seen that Seinfeld episode where he writes down a funny joke at night only to wake up and realize the whole thing is illegible? Yeah, that's me. More times than I care to remember. :)

    I hadn't thought about it that way, Lori, but it makes perfect sense. There is a disconnect that happens when I try to say the words as opposed to writing the words.

    But then, I can't even get into reading my stuff out loud. I know a lot of people do then when editing. I just can't. Only if a sentence looks off do I do that. Perhaps another disconnect there too.

  9. Funny you should mention Seinfeld - I thought of the one where George gets a book on tape cos he can't be bothered to read it, but then he can't listen to it either cos the guy reading it sounds just like him!

  10. LOL! This is me, absolutely, and it always seems to happen when I'm driving. So many times I've prayed for red lights so I can stop, quickly rummage around for pen and paper, and get down those perfect words.

    I'd never use a recorder, either, but my problems is that my voice would be drowned out by the racket of the three little passengers I always have with me in the car!